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Need for speed? Exploring the relative importance of patents and utility models among German firms

Jussi Heikkilä () and Annika Lorenz

Economics of Innovation and New Technology, 2018, vol. 27, issue 1, 80-105

Abstract: Despite the wide use of two-tiered patent systems (patents and utility models (UMs)), there is little empirical evidence about how often UMs are actually used, what kind of firms use them to protect their intellectual property, and how firms rank them relative to patents. We offer such an analysis using data from Germany. We find that larger firms are more likely to use both protection methods. Moreover, a short life cycle of products and services is associated with an increased likelihood to use UMs. The features and functioning of the German UM system are of broader interest because it has been a benchmark for several second tier patent protection systems around the world.

Date: 2018
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DOI: 10.1080/10438599.2017.1310794

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